The Jackal and the Rabbit
Narrated by Mohammed Kuyu
Once upon a time, a jackal was looking for food. While he was creeping under rocks, a big boulder rolled on to his paw, and it stuck him to the ground.
He pulled and pulled and gnawed and gnawed but he couldn’t free his paw. Then a few minutes later a rabbit came along.
The jackal said, “Rabbit, please help me. Remove this boulder and free me.”
“I’m weak,” said the rabbit. “and it will take a lot of my time to move this boulder. What are you willing to give me if I do manage to free you?”
And the jackal said, “Don’t worry, I’ll feed you until you’re bursting, until you can’t eat any more.”
So the rabbit pushed and pushed and he managed to move the boulder. But the moment the jackal was free, he sprang up and caught the rabbit and said, “I’m going to eat you.”
And the rabbit said, “No, that’s impossible. How can you eat someone who has saved you from a trap?”
And the jackal said, “Well, I’ve gone without food all day. I’ve got to have something to eat.”
And the rabbit said, “No, it’s impossible. Let’s go to the elders, and let them decide what the correct thing is.”
And so they went and they found one of the old men and they told him what had happened.
And the old man listened to them and he said, “Well, tell me what happened.”
And they told him everything that had happened.
Then the old man said, “No, the jackal’s wrong. The rabbit should go free.”
The jackal became very angry and he said, “Not only will I eat the rabbit, but I’ll also eat you.”
The old man pretended to be terrified and he said, “All right, I think my judgment is wrong. Let me revise my judgment. How can I have given my judgment without actually seeing all the evidence?”
So he said, “Please take me back to the spot where you first met so you can re-enact the scene.”
So they went back to the spot and the old man said, “So, over there, where was the jackal exactly?”
As the jackal lay down and said, “ Here I was.”
And the old man said to the rabbit, “And you pushed this boulder? I don’t believe it. Show me how you pushed it.”
And the rabbit slowly pushed the boulder on to the jackal’s paw.
And the old man said, “So this is how you found the jackal?”
And the rabbit said, “Yes.”
So the old man turned to the jackal and he said, “Are you sure? Is this how he found you?”
And the jackal said, “Yes.”
And the old man said, “Good. Let’s call it quits. Rabbit, you go along from where you were coming, and I’ll also go along from where I was, and we’ll leave the jackal where he was.”
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